SWEDEN: Jonas Åhman opens Tullhuset in Kalmar
NEWS SWEDEN: Jonas Åhman, the man behind critically acclaimed restaurant Trädgårdsgatan 26, is expanding across the Öland bridge. This spring, he will be moving into Tullhuset (The Toll House) on the mainland.
Jonas Åhman has a quite unique experience on his resumé. For three years, he managed the residence of Swedish Gen. Håkan Syrén, when Syrén held the post of Chairman of the European Union’s Military Committee (EUMC). In Brussels, Åhman organised and cooked luncheons, cocktails and dinners for delegations from more than 40 countries, among them USA, Russia and China.
– I wanted to showcase Swedish culture through food, of course. I would pack the car full of stuff when driving down to Brussels! But there was also so much to be inspired by in and around Brussels. French cooking, having Paris a little more than an hour away, and the districts of Champagne, Burgundy, Alsace…
Away from the hectic kitchen of his restaurant, spending long hours planning the next event, Åhman had time to think – about food, life and what to do next. When he and his family moved home to Sweden in 2012, a plan had formed.
– I knew I wanted to expand and open another restaurant. But I was in no rush, and waited until the right opportunity came along.
That opportunity was Tullhuset. Built 130 years ago, the old toll house has never housed a restaurant before. It’s located on the Kalmar seafront, with a clear view across the sound towards Öland Island, home to both Åhman and his restaurant Trädgårdsgatan 26. Earning a spot in the top 250 in last year’s edition of White Guide Nordic, our critic’s only complaint was the restaurant’s sparse availability – open only in the peak of summer and before Christmas. That will change with Tullhuset, which will be open all year round. It will also have more than twice the space compared to Trädgårdsgatan’s intimate 16 seats. However, Åhman plans to keep his signature pared-down style. At Trädgårdsgatan, only a set menu of three courses are served every night, changing from day to day depending on what’s available. But those three courses are enough to keep customers coming back for more.
Read more at: Tullhuset